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Birdbrain

by Johanna Sinisalo

Inspired by (and quoting from) Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, this story takes us on a journey into the unknown in the company of a young Finnish couple. But this is more than a simple backpacker's trip. As sinister events unfolded I became conscious of another presence watching me, as I watched Jyrki and Heidi, making this an unsettling and at times unfathomable read.

Extract

Even though every part of my body is aching, I have to admit that Tasmania is in some unfathomable way both age-old and fresh as the day it was born. Old and experienced enough that it is knows how to touch a nerve but at the same time so young that it almost feels as though we are depriving a newborn creature of the peace it has just discovered and needs.
The bushes rustle and crackle - always to the left, always behind us, incessantly - as though Tasmania itself were following us, invisible, smart enough constantly to devise little pranks and childish enough to carry them out.
Translated by David Hackston

Parallels

Downward to the Earth by Robert Silverberg
 

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